What is happening in the Holy Dormition Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra should have ended 30 years ago, right after gaining independence, together with the creation of the Ukrainian army, the Ukrainian banking system and other institutions without which a full-fledged state cannot exist.
This process was maybe not started but supported by President Kravchuk, when the unrecognized UOC KP appeared. But Kravchuk did not dare to take the next necessary step —decisive termination of the activity of the Moscow Patriarchate in Ukraine. The tumor remained.
President Kuchma, as a director, was more interested in material than mystical processes. Therefore, Russian television was removed from the first button in Ukraine, but the church was left.
President Yushchenko was going to finish what Kravchuk started. He was going to, and going to, and going to... And then his presidential term ended — “my nation didn’t understand me,” and so on. By the way, it was under Yushchenko that the UOC MP felt free and satisfied, built churches, and increased its congregation.
President Yanukovych was openly oriented towards the Moscow patriarchate, but he believed that the church is for the tsar, not the tsar for the church. That is, the clergy in Ukraine should serve the interests of Yanukovych, not Patriarch Kirill. Accordingly, he didn’t hurry to unite Ukrainian churches with Moscow. However, that would have definitely happened had it not been for the Maidan.
President Poroshenko took that very decisive step to create the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, without which there really can be no Ukrainian state. But he was too preoccupied with his own PR and tried to fit the tomos in with the elections. He lost the election, so he did not complete the theme of faith from his campaign poster.
And now, under Zelenskyi's presidency and under the conditions of Russian aggression, the UOC MP — the de facto branch of the Russian imperial church in Ukraine — is finally beginning to disappear, to evaporate like dew in the sun, i.e. according to our national anthem. Because this is the demand of the majority of our society.
The Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra is one of the most important Orthodox shrines. Even the Bolsheviks did not risk destroying it. If the UOC-MP is ousted from the Lavra, it will lose its spiritual roots and its natural decline will begin.
The OCU will continue to supervise the caves; so in this sense nothing will change. Some churchmen from the UOC will transfer to the OCU, and this is already happening. A part (unfortunately, a small one) will go to the monasteries in the remote Carpathian forests, where they will pray for the atonement of their sins and the salvation of their souls. It is in this and not in the service of the wealthy flock in the metropolitan churches that the real service to God consists. You will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven on a Mercedes.
The living — to the living, the dead — to the dead. And the UOC-MP priests will have no one to blame for their situation. Because they very often repeated one of the Orthodox dogmas: "All power comes from God. And all trials in our life are also from God."
The church is not the same as faith. Faith is about the soul. The church is about politics and money. Let's not forget that. And the faithful flock of the moscow church will slowly calm down. They somehow survived the fact that the under-empire did not seize Kyiv in three days.
Oleksandr Kochetkovthe Kyiv-pechersk lavra ukraine front lines